Wanamaker Organ Daily Concerts
A Philadelphia Tradition Continuously Since 1911
Twice a day, six days a week, a switch is thrown, and eight massive blowers breathe life into the gigantic wind machinery of the world’s largest playing pipe organ. Its silken sound summons people from all over the planet.
Here is the pre-COVID schedule for regular twice-daily 45-minute recitals:
Monday through Saturday at 12 noon
Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, Saturday at 5:30 pm
Wednesday and Friday at 7 pm
Visitors are welcome to tour the console (Floor Two), the command center of the Organ, and meet the staff following the daily concerts.
A visitor film and brochures are at our kiosk outside the organ loft,
together with a video feed of the console.
An enticing selection of Wanamaker Organ CDs, DVDs and books is at the Macy’s Info Desk
on the First Floor, Market, at the entrance to the Grand Court.
We regret that the Wanamaker Organ is not played on Sundays.
Please visit our HOME PAGE for specifics on any Special Concerts that may also be referenced below under the Daily Performer Schedule. We update current concert information more frequently on the Home Page.
Daily concerts are free and are a part of the Macy’s shopping experience. Concerts are held every calendar day except Sundays, Thanksgiving and Christmas. The evening concert is frequently NOT held on Christmas Eve or on New Year’s Eve. On rare occasions, daily concerts are pre-empted by special events such as fashion shows.
In between daily concerts, an informational presentation is available on our Visitor Kiosk outside the console. Hit the stop tablet marked Roman Numeral I to play the Visitor Orientation Film. Or you may view it HERE. Wanamaker Organ merchandise is sold at the Macy’s Information Desk on the First Floor.
Scroll down to see a link to our Visitors Guide with tips on food, lodging and amenities.
Daily Organ Concert – Frequent Performers – pre-covid roster
MONDAY Noon: Peter Richard Conte. 5:30 pm: Dylan Shaw
TUESDAY Noon: Fred Haas 5:30 pm: Fred Haas
WEDNESDAY Noon: Peter Richard Conte or Wesley Parrott
7 pm: Peter Conte or guests. (This concert is streamcast at
YesterdayUSA.com and can be accessed thru the TuneIn Radio app.)
THURSDAY Noon: Peter Richard Conte. 5:30 pm: Michael Lawrence
FRIDAY Noon: Peter Richard Conte. 7 pm: Peter Richard Conte
SATURDAY Noon: Peter Richard Conte. 5:30 pm: Peter Richard Conte
Because these concerts are a daily feature of the Macy’s shopping experience (a tradition that has been unbroken since 1911), no reservations or tickets are needed. Pieces played on any given occasion are at the discretion of the performer and are not known in advance.
PLEASE NOTE: This performer schedule is presented only as a rough guide. It is subject to unannounced alteration owing to vacations, illness, happenings of the moment and periodic religious duties such as holy days, weddings and funerals. Other occasional performers include Rudy Lucente, Mark Bani, Colin Howland, Steven Ball and Aaron Patterson. We will endeavor to update this schedule as further information is provided us.
Daily concerts are free and are held in the huge Grand Court of the Macy’s Philadelphia department store. Visitors unfamiliar with the Store should know that no tickets or reservations are required.
Although we get many requests from incredibly talented people, we very much regret that visiting organists are NOT permitted to take part in daily performances. Please do not contact us with requests to play. Thank you in advance for your understanding.
2020 Wanamaker Organ Special Concert Season,
BREAKING: Tickets are now on sale for our VIRTUAL Grand Halloween Concert, a full-length streamcast presentation starring Peter Richard Conte. There is a ticket priced for every pocketbook, including Free, so please take advantage of this special offer! Buying a ticket at a higher price helps us offset the costs of this expensive production. The concert is featured FRIDAY Oct. 30 at 8 PM with a repeat showing at 11 PM. Ticketholders will be sent a link on concert day with instructions on how to tune in. Additional details are on our home page.
Macy’s Center City Philadelphia daily store hours are here. The Store and Organ are at 13th and Market Streets in downtown Philadelphia, next to City Hall. Rest rooms are on the Third Floor, 13th Street.
Producing Special Concerts in a department store is both a delight and a challenge. As our website has evolved, we have found it useful to put special concert information directly on our home page. This is especially true because our special concert schedule is dependent on the release of Macy’s quarterly sales schedule, and as a result we generally only have six to eight weeks of notice from the time a date is granted until the event itself. We therefore give it the utmost prominence on the website and update it more often.
The approximate annual pattern of Friends of the Wanamaker Organ special events is a Spring afternoon concert, a post-Memorial Day Wanamaker Organ Day festival with ticketed evening concert, a Fall concert (almost always in the evening and ticketed) and a Christmas concert, generally on a Sunday afternoon or evening after Thanksgiving. Wurlitzer events are often held in conjunction with Wanamaker Organ Day and sometimes our Fall concert. The Wurlitzer is also sometimes played during the Christmas season for people waiting to get in the Dickens Christmas Village.
During the Christmas season the Wanamaker Organ is covered with a scrim that slightly affects its sound. The noon concerts generally follow the 7-minute Light Show. Most of the Friends of the Wanamaker Organ special concerts are geared to warmer months when humidity in the air dramatically increases the presence of the organ in the room, and when tuning tends to be more stable. Also by not holding many special events in the winter we are able to avoid being snowed out. Publication of our newsletters tends to follow the concert schedule, so that members can have timely information on our presentations.
Please consult the top of our home page of Wanamakerorgan.com for breaking developments. All members receive timely concert information through our quarterly newsletter, The Stentor, as well, and receive discounts on ticket purchases to certain special events.
Kimmel Center Organ Concerts
Kimmel Center organ concerts are another beloved Philadelphia music tradition.
The Fred J. Cooper Organ at Verizon Hall, home to the Philadelphia Orchestra. For the latest organ-concertinformation, please click here! We have been given to understand that tickets to some events may receive a discount when the word Wanamaker is input in the appropriate field!
- You may connect with the Fred J. Cooper Memorial Organ on Facebook here!
- An entertaining highlights film on Kimmel Center Organ Day 2013 is here!
- Listen to the Fred J. Cooper organ at the Kimmel Center on MPR’s Pipedreams here!